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Tech Tips Issue #4-Regular Maintenance

Tech Tips Issue #4
Regular Maintenance
In this the fourth issue of tech tips our focus will be on preventative maintenance of your computer and software. Often we run into problems that could have been easily been avoided with a little preventative maintenance. Example a virus could sneak in through a back door that a simple security patch could have fixed causing the machine to need reloaded. This is not as far-fetched as you may believe. The kak worm is a virus that exploited such a security hole to infect machines. Too much dirt or a bad cooling fan could cause your processor to overheat causing you to need a new processor chip. Not having the startup optimized can cause your computer to run slow or possibly not able to run some programs. Not having the current web browser version can cause your machine to lock up on the internet. Not having your bios and drivers up to date can cause new hardware to not function correctly. Temporary internet and system files can take up valuable drive space and cause crashes. A fragmented hard drive can cause your system to run slow. A dirty mouse pad can cause your mouse to need cleaned more often shortening its life So what can you do?
Replace your mouse pad regularly.
Run scandisk periodically. Scandisk checks file and drive integrity and can fix many file errors before they get out of hand.
Running defrag on a regular basis can keep your machine running faster because the computer doesn't have to chase all over the hard drive to get bits and pieces of files.
Updating the operating system and web browser using service patches obtained from Microsoft will close recently discovered security gaps and fix bugs in windows.
Updating your antivirus to the latest version and keeping the definition files up to date can help protect you from viruses. You should also run a complete virus scan monthly.
Checking the power supply voltage to be sure it's within tolerance should be done annually to prevent damage to the rest of the system.
Cleaning out the household dust and checking the fans can prevent the system from overheating should be done annually. Believe it or not the inside if a computer can become downright filthy no matter how clean your home is. This dust and dirt can act like a blanket and hold heat in.
Removing temporary files no longer used by the computer will help keep drive space available. If you don't know what files are safe to remove don't attempt this yourself.
Removing unnecessary programs from the startup will help keep your computer running faster. Programs loading on startup are probably the leading cause of a computer getting slower. Look down at the right hand corner of your screen just to the left of your clock. The icons there are programs running in memory and using up resources.
Cleaning your floppy drive and CD-ROM drive using cleaning disks can greatly increase their life span. Flashing (updating) the bios (A chip on the motherboard that has basic input and output drivers programed into it.) should only be done by a professional. Flashing the bios with the incorrect version will turn the motherboard into an expensive paperweight. All of this should be done regularly but often people put it off forget or simply don't know what to do. That is why here at Swetland Supply Company we have put together three annual service packages listed below. Look at them as a tune up for your computer.
Paul Daume
Computer Repair Technician
Swetland Supply Co.
Vandalia IL

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